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Q: I have been trying to remember where I saw Laz Alonso before “The Mysteries of Laura.” Please enlighten me. – Carol Ehlers-FitzPatrick, East Aurora

A: The actor now playing Debra Messing’s police partner previously was a regular on the series “Breakout Kings” and “Deception,” and he’s appeared on many others including “Person of Interest,” “Southland,” “NCIS,” “CSI: Miami” and “Entourage.”

While he wasn’t too recognizable in “Avatar,” he’s also made his share of feature films. Among the others have been “Fast & Furious,” the remake of “Straw Dogs,” “Stomp the Yard,” “Jarhead” and “Constantine.”


Q: I’ve been a big fan of “Gunsmoke” since watching the original showings, but I never saw where the character Chester went. How and why did Dennis Weaver leave the show? – Phyllis Tramontano, Palm Coast, Fla.

A: The winner of a supporting Emmy for the role in 1959, Weaver left the classic Western in 1964 for a show of his own, “Kentucky Jones.” It lasted only one season, but after it he would star in other series including “Gentle Ben,” “Stone,” “Emerald Point N.A.S.” and “Buck James.”

Of course, Weaver’s biggest post-”Gunsmoke” success was “McCloud,” which revisited the premise of Clint Eastwood’s movie “Coogan’s Bluff” by making him a frontier lawman placed in New York. Though it ran for seven years, “McCloud” never was a weekly show. Initially, it was part of NBC’s “Four in One” concept that rotated it with three other series (including Rod Serling’s “Night Gallery”), then it joined the “Mystery Movie” franchise in which it also alternated with other elements including “Columbo” and “McMillan & Wife.” Weaver departed “Gunsmoke” before the end of his last season, with a story built to facilitate his character’s exit from Dodge City. Targeted by a gunman, Chester was saved though the woman who warned him of the danger was killed, a tragedy that had a profound effect on him.


Q: When does the new season of “The Bachelor” begin? – Carol Judge, Cyberspace

A: Chris Soules – who was among those sent packing by Andi Dorfman on the most recent round of “The Bachelorette” – starts his own search for love when Season 19 of “The Bachelor” begins Jan. 5 on ABC, with the premiere airing live in the eastern half of the country. Soules and host Chris Harrison also are slated to be aboard a float in the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day.